Glenn Beck falsely accused Abdulrahman Alharbi of being the “money man” behind the Boston Marathon bombing that occurred last year, even after the FBI had cleared Alharbi of any wrongdoing. Alharbi filed a defamation suit against Beck, and did Beck apologize? He sure didn’t. Instead, he plans on going into the suit with guns blazing.
Beck will argue that Alharbi is impeding upon his First Amendment rights, which will require Beck’s legal team to convince a court that Alharbi is a “public figure” and that Beck acted with “actual malice.” Beck said that Alharbi became an “involuntary” public figure when he “behaved suspiciously . . . when the bombs detonated.”
Alharbi’s attorney’s scoffed at Beck’s argument saying that “an individual does not become a public figure due to the fact that he is investigated in connection with a crime, and then states publicly that he was not involved in the crime.”
At this point, Beck is beyond trying to be right or wrong about a subject on which he’s unqualified to remark. He’s just trying to make a point and remain unaccountable for his words. Whether he wins the suit or not is irrelevant, he was reckless and harmful with his speech. But would one expect anything else from Beck?
Josh is a writer and researcher with Ring of Fire. Follow him on Twitter @dnJdeli.